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Volume 1, Number 1                                                        Combined with The VAK, est. 1982                                                                          2004

Communication Strategies
for Conflicts
Influencing with Integrity
Seminar to be in Palo Alto

 By Genie Z. Laborde, Ph.D.
Part 1 of a Series
Conflicts, misunderstandings, disagreements, arguments, wars happen.  They can be solved with advanced communication strategies.  Here in this series are strategies for eleven types of conflicts. 
    When a conflict looms, what can you do
        to avoid?
        to settle on disagreement?
        to agree?
    Avoidance is a good strategy but once in the middle of a conflict, that’s not an option.  Avoidance behaviors often exacerbate the underlying conflicts, as well.
     Settle means to find a way around or through the conflict so that peace and pleasure can return.  Anger, frustration, and resentment sour your day.  Of course some people do take pleasure from conflict.  If so, don’t read on.
     I’m assuming that you won’t completely close down and retreat from conflict, but that you are not addicted to the adrenaline rush of anger/fear from confrontations and seek it out.  In other words, relationships that energize you in a positive way are your métier.  Thus these eleven strategies I’m presenting one article at a time.  Different strategies for different kinds of conflicts:  interior, personal, family, friends, casual acquaintances, chance encounters, work, church, community, nation, and planet.  You may mix and match these strategies, of course.
    So the first strategy is for a conflict inside you—among your sub-personalities.  You are not aware of sub-personalities?  O.K.  How about when you want to stay in bed, yet you get up?  Or how about when you want to leave a party and, at the same time, a part of you wants to stay?  How about when you know you must phone your mother, but you don’t?  How about when you want to remain single and still get married?  Find a new job and stay in the security of this one?  Our two-sided brains set up conflicts.
    We all have these conflicting parts.  The more aware you are of them and the more you seek reconciliation, the healthier you will be—physically and mentally.
    O. K.  So what’s the strategy for internal conflicts?
Hot Seat Gestalt
    A quick, efficient way to discover all the pieces of the quandary and resolve them with conscious logic, hot seat can be done alone or with a guide, if you prefer.  If you choose a guide, be sure s/he is supportive, bright, and has your trust.  Otherwise, do this alone.
    If you want to read the rationale behind this strategy, there is a list of books at the end of the article.  Frederick Perls, M.D., made this technique famous and routinely performed “miracle” cures with it.  Years of dysfunctional behaviors on the part of thousands of people ended with this method.  Here’s a chance to discover for yourself secrets from your own unconscious and pathways toward rewarding decisions.
    Take two chairs and place them facing each other.  Allow at least 30 minutes with no interruptions.  Turn off your cell phone.  Lock your office door.  Whatever.
    Think about your conflict. Write the core dilemma down.  For example,
    I want to get married Part 1
    I want to stay single Part 2
    I want to take this job offer Part 1
    I want the security of my present job Part 2
    Now, name the two parts.  For the first example,
    Part 1 Future husband/wife
    Part 2 Casanova or bachelor girl
For the second example,
    Part 1 Risk taker
    Part 2 Security Sam
Now pretend you are Part 1.  Call yourself by name, and begin to tell Part 2 all the reasons you are who you are.  Be eloquent.  If you want, you can take notes so you can remember all the reasons you are Part 1.
    When you run out of reasons, get up and sit in the opposite Part 2 chair.  Pretend Part 1 is still there, but you as Part 2 move.  This step is important.
    Now, become Part 2 and list the reasons for the opposite behavior.  Dig deep and find as many as you can.  If writing helps you remember, make notes.
    Now get up from Chair 2, take a deep breath, and become Part 1 as you sit in Part 1’s chair.  Begin to tell Part 2, still in imaginary Part 2’s chair, why Part 1 must win this conflict.
    Repeat this switching of roles and switching chairs until you notice a resolution.  This will show up in your body first, then in your voice tone, then in words.
Fritz Perls called these conflicting sub-personalities top dog and underdog.  These may show up in your conflict.  If so, according to Dr. Perls, the underdog always won.  What does this mean?
    The top dog is what you should do.  The underdog is what you want to do.  The underdog has more motivation and energy.   So the want will win.  That’s OK, actually, because the want will supply the energy to make your decision the “right” decision.
Also, you will learn a lot about your own unconscious and release a lot of blocked energy that has been idling inside this conflict.
    Enjoy your resolution
    The next article will be “Strategies for Conflicts in Marriage and Such.” 
    Send me an email about what happened when you tried the Hot Seat Gestalt.  I’m interested in feedback.  Genie@influence-integrity.com
IDEA Office
I.D.E.A. Office

I.D.E.A. Communication presents the three-day training
Influencing with Integrity
The Week of March  8 OR
The Week of March 15

at the I.D.E.A. Office
235 Alma Street, Palo Alto, Calif.
For more information
visit the Web page,
email, or phone 800.228.4069

IDEA Office
I.D.E.A. Office

Genie Fulfills Contract with Santa Clara County Office of Education in Santa Clara, California
Genie Z. Labord training at Santa Clara Education
     The budget crisis in California created a hiatus in a series of trainings being conducted by Spenish-speaking IDEA-certified trainers in school districts in San Francisco and Santa Cruz.  Since the Influencing with Integrity workbooks, textbook, and videos have been translated into Spanish, the Hispanic parents learned interpersonal and family communication skills quickly and easily in their native language.  As one enthusiastic Spanish-speaking father said, "I have learned to see with my heart."

     The break in the series of Influencing with Integrity trainings in Spanish created time for four additional days of trainings for the Office of Education—this time in English.

Eleanor Oelsner writes about 3-Minute Steps to Influencing with Integrity
     I got on your website and viewed the 3 minute demo. 
     Brilliant concept:  You provide easy-to- chew, helpful bites of understanding how to communicate with others.  Following is the immediate response your demo provoked in my thinking:
     As I'm sure you know, Meyers-Briggs is widely used in companies to try to grow some sense of interpersonal relativity.  The "E's (extroverts) and "I's" (introverts) still have a common problem with communication (i.e., "what is useful criteria for observing others?"  
    Corporate cultures tend to focus employees attention around:
  • status symbols (trophies of battles won and rewards granted);
  • kow-tow to power (you are my boss, therefore whatever you say is right and I will obey); 
  • sibling rivalry and unresolved family dynamics (you are boss/coworker) therefore you are my unreasonable father and  therefore anything you say is suspect=>wrong).
  • pop-psychology (I have a positive attitude, I'm assertive,  therefore I am right and don't have to listen.)
  • pedigree (I have a degree(s) from Harvard, Stanford, etc,  I'm a god, where's my BMW?)
  • appearance (if I'm in shape, lean & well dressed, I deserve special treatment, after all this is a LOT of work to keep up AND those who are in shape are the only others I need to observe with respect)
     To be fair, people come to these accommodations honestly.  They are wandering around in a wilderness and grasping at any clues that might lead them out.  As you and I know, these are all trance-supporting judgments and reaction formations. 
     Whether you are and "E" or an "I", doesn't mean you have any reasonable relationship with the "in here" (yourself) or the "out there" (all the other people on the planet).  Sometimes, simply noticing that there are actual beings in those bodies you interact with every day is a revelation to the corporate android.  The fact that they might hear and understand what you say better if you approach them in their preferred mode of communication is like coming to Jesus for some.  Dawn begins to break on a very dark horizon of a long winters night.  They are not alone in a hostile territory!  It can be a tremendous relief.

Eleanor Oelsner at eoelsner@mindspring.com

3-minute steps to IWI
Influencing with Integrity
Around the World

Genie Z. Laborde and her daughter
Kathryn in Hong Kong

Influencing with Integrity
has been presented live in these cities and countries

Amsterdam, Holland
Brussels, Belgium
Budapest, Hungary
Chihuahua, Mexico
Johannesburg, South Africa
London, England
Munich, Germany
Novosibirsk, Russia
Ottawa, Canada
Paris, France
St. Petersburg, Russia
Stavanger, Norway
Taipai, Taiwan
Toronto, Canada
     Now the E-Learning program,
 3-Minute Steps to Influencing with Integrity,
is available everywhere there is broadband for your computer.
You can experience a live demonstration of this streaming video online training  by following this link.
    Jerry Laude of IBM had this to say about the E-Learning program.
     "This class is the E-Learning equivalent of the sit-down real time classroom version of Influencing With Integrity seminars developed by Dr. Genie LaBorde.  I had the opportunity about 10 years ago to take the classroom version here in Rochester. It was by far one of the best (probably the best) classes I had ever taken in my 12 years with IBM at that time.    Next month I will have 22 years with IBM. Genie called me about 2 months ago and offered me the opportunity to use the "3 Minutes/Day for 90 Days" E-learning class...
     "I have used it every workday since it was installed in February of this year. ... Its easy, its educational, and its fun.
Applies to marketing, procurement (buyers/commodity managers/engineers), development manufacturing, anywhere really.    It can be applied to your life outside of IBM as well. 
     "Understanding of diverse communication methods and techniques used by people in workplace or personal lives.  Develops affinity for differing communication personalities (driven by cultural backgrounds, gender, acquired techniques, etc.).
     "Goal—Tune in, absorb and learn the other person's modes of communication, bond more quickly, capture and solidify relationships, and resolve issues faster with fewer conflicts so that each side (opposing or not) dovetails toward a WIN-WIN situation for all parties involved.
...this class is so interesting and helpful, you don't want to miss anything.    I learned things that I never even thought about before, especially paying attention to another person's mannerisms and postures as they communicate. ...You learn powers of observation and how to use them for your benefit and the benefit of others.

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